The article describes a conflict between a woman, The writer, and her mother-in-law (MIL) regarding seating arrangements for a flight to attend a funeral. The MIL and The writer do not have a close relationship, and the MIL can be passive-aggressive toward her.
When the MIL’s husband passed away suddenly, she invited the writer and her husband to attend the funeral and booked their tickets. However, when The writer’s husband told her they couldn’t sit together on the plane because his mother had booked him a first-class ticket and the writer an economy ticket, she felt humiliated and disrespected.
She decided not to attend the funeral and went back home. Her husband was furious and called her “petty” and “spoiled” for missing the funeral over such a “ridiculous” reason.
The Devil is In the Detail
The writer argued that the MIL could have booked them both in economy if money was an issue and that she wanted to sit next to her husband for support during a difficult time. Her husband, however, called her pathetic for thinking about such things when his dad had just died.
He argued that his mother did not owe the writer anything and she should be grateful for the paid ticket. The writer is asking whether she was the one at fault (AITA) for going home over this.
The writer added that she wanted to sit beside her husband to provide emotional support, and she was shocked to learn they couldn’t sit together. She felt the MIL was treating her as less important during a hard time, and this added to her humiliation.
In response, some people in the comments section suggested that the writer’s husband was also at fault for not standing up for her and allowing the MIL to book separate seats. Others suggested that the writer was justified in feeling disrespected and humiliated and that the MIL was also at fault for not considering her feelings.
Lack Of Support is The Real Issue
There is a varied discussion within the comment section, which criticizes both the writer, the mother-in-law, and, at times, the husband. There is definitely a reason to believe that the mother-in-law was being disrespectful; most have agreed. However, it seems like the writer was missing the whole point of the trip. She should have been there to support her husband in spite of what his mother did.
Understanding the Husbands Perspective
One of the most notable comments suggests that:
“Obviously, MIL is an a**hole, and her actions were uncalled for and petty. But you made your husband go to his father’s funeral without the support of his spouse, and you did this over a first-class seat. You played right into your MIL’s hands and may have caused irreparable damage to your marriage.”
It is as if the mother-in-law was the story’s true villain, but the writer played right into her hands. By not attending the father in laws funeral, the writer has walked into a situation that could arguably never be forgiven for the abandonment of her grieving husband. Potentially a cunning plan that worked perfectly.
Assumptions Aren’t Always Correct
However, some have taken a different perspective on the mother in laws intent:
“MIL lost her husband of decades. I can’t imagine her grief and how crazy and surreal life is right now. I don’t know if her booking the tickets this way was intentional or if it was the only seats she could get. And OP doesn’t know either. Because she bailed as soon as she found out she wasn’t sitting with her husband.”
This is a perfectly fair assumption of what might have happened. If only two tickets were left on a last-minute flight, the mother-in-law would have booked them without a second thought. The fact that she bought two tickets is a testament that she wanted her to attend the funeral. Perhaps the writer is as “spoiled” as the husband suggested. Could this devastating reaction really be due to a simple hasty booking?
Ultimately, the commenters did not look fondly at the writer’s decision. They have taken the general stance that it is best to keep your cool and support your beloved husband in that situation. A decision that the writer will likely now regret.
What do you think? Who was at fault?